Business Districts Advocate

Job Type

Full Time


Minimum: $79,469
Maximum: $119,203



Start Date


Application Deadline



700 5th Avenue
Suite 5752
United States


The Office of Economic Development's Only in Seattle team supports community-led neighborhood business district development. Team members center their work to increase racial equity within districts by supporting business owners of color and organizations by and for people of color through stakeholder engagement, business district action planning, organizational capacity building, and plan implementation. This program provides seed funding and support, problem solving, capacity building, government navigation, and connection to resources for Seattle's many neighborhood business districts each year.


To support the success of this team, we are looking for a Business District Advocate who will work with a set of business districts as a subject matter expert for business district community economic development planning and implementation. In addition, you will develop and recommend strategies related to City investments in business districts that impact the realization of the community goals, the livability of urban districts, and the ability of small business to serve community and create jobs. To accomplish these goals, you will attend, present at, and facilitate external community and organizational meetings and negotiate and coordinate with different departments and organizations to address community needs. You will also have the opportunity to play a vital role in advising and advocating strategies for the Office of Economic Development, the Mayor's Office, City Council, and other departments.

You will be successful in this position if you feel passionate about and have experience in:

  • Supporting the leadership of communities of color to build business districts that serve them and provide opportunities for business and job growth
  • Understanding and overcoming implicit bias and how it impacts personal, institutional, and structural racism
  • Developing strategies that enhance neighborhood business districts through small business support, marketing and events, public space improvements, arts and culture, and urban design
  • Assisting volunteer and nonprofit organizations to grow as organizations towards building systemic change, institute good practices, and build their organizational strength to carry out their action plans
  • Cultivating the sharing of best practices and networking across organizations and cultures to learn from each other, solve problems and share solutions
  • Using creative thinking and innovation to recommend and develop better policies and programs supportive of neighborhood business districts and small businesses, with particular emphasis on supporting communities of color
  • Utilizing social media for community organizing and communication


Your effectiveness in this role will depend on your ability to:

  • Develop authentic relationships with community partners such as small businesses, nonprofit organizations, property owners and residents, particularly with people from different cultures and backgrounds, who speak multiple languages and have varying experiences with local government
  • Coordinate cross-departmental city-wide efforts to solve problems through hands-on facilitation and by informing the business district community of changes to City policy
  • Work successfully within a political environment and be a bridge between the city and the community
  • Utilize your expertise in business district revitalization techniques, budgeting, contracting, and oversight and compliance with federal and local funding requirements
  • Communicate effectively, orally and in writing, in different settings, including public community meetings, nonprofit organization meetings, and in small groups
  • Work in a fast-paced environment on a cross-functional team
  • Manage competing priorities, accomplish tasks, and monitor performance metrics


You will be most successful if you have demonstrated significant technical knowledge in business district revitalization technique and project management, particularly in a complex public or non-profit organization and have experience in public administration, business development, community building and outreach, and collaborating with various stakeholders. A commitment to listening, creating space for diverse perspectives, and the pursuit of inclusive and just outcomes must be at the center of your professional practice. The ability to communicate at all levels tactfully and effectively will also contribute to your success. You will need to be skilled in fostering and developing mutually respectful relationships, achieving amenable solutions for those with competing interests, and fostering a collaborative approach to problem solving.

Specifically, the work requires

Experience in:

  • Outreach, community building, communication, and collaboration with various stakeholders
  • Working to eliminate structural racism in programs, processes, and policies
  • Microsoft Office software, such as Excel, Word, and PowerPoint
  • Providing leadership within a community of color-led and focused organization or effort



  • How to use innovative thinking and identify best practices to approach problems, resolve conflicts, and implement programs
  • Nonprofit and/or community-based organizations and how they operate and function successfully


You may have acquired or developed these skills and experience if you've worked in any of the following areas:

  • Public administration, business development, community development, community organizing, policy development, urban planning, economic development, business district management, social work, nonprofit management, public relations, marketing, communications, sales, or other related fields

Additional Information

This position is classified as a Strategic Advisor 1 - Exempt. OED supports the City of Seattle's Race and Social Justice Initiative to end institutionalized racism by eliminating barriers to access, providing the staff and public with opportunities for growth, and developing equitable access to the programs and services we offer. If you share those values and meet the qualifications, we invite you to apply for this position.


To be considered for this position, you must submit your application, attaching a cover letter, resume, and answering all supplemental questions at no later than 4:00pm Pacific Time on Tuesday, November 27, 2018. For your cover letter, please describe why you are interested in this position and summarize how your background meets the required and desired qualifications. Please tailor your resume to show how your background and experience relates to the job responsibilities outlined in this advertisement. This position is open to all candidates that meet the minimum qualifications. The Office of Economic Development values diverse perspectives and life experiences. Applicants will be considered regardless of race, color, creed, national origin, ancestry, sex, marital status, disability, religious or political affiliation, age, sexual orientation, medical condition, or pregnancy. The Office of Economic Development encourages people of all backgrounds to apply, including people of color, immigrants, refugees, women, LGBTQ, people with disabilities, veterans, and those with diverse life experiences. If you have questions, please contact Lindsey King at


For your cover letter, please describe why you are interested in this position and summarize how your background meets the required and desired qualifications. Please tailor your resume to show how your background and experience relates to the job responsibilities outlined in this advertisement. 

Professional Level

None specified

Minimum Education Required

No requirement